Wednesday, March 17, 2010

interesting experience-long, but please read!

The other day I was at the grocery store, going through the check-out line, when the cashier asked me if I was ready for Easter and started talking about wanting to color eggs. I told her I don't eat eggs, which then led to a discussion on being vegan. She said she could understand not eating meat, but she would never be able to give up cheese and milk, and then she said that dairy cows were probably treated better than the cows for slaughter anyway. I said no, actually they're not; for starters, they're kept pregnant so they'll produce milk. The cashier couldn't believe that. So my question for anyone reading this is do you think dairy cows are special cows that just magically produce milk? I would like to share a little secret with you; cows are mammals and just like humans, only produce milk after giving birth. There is no such thing as a cow that produces milk constantly, which is why dairy cows are constantly impregnated. And don't go thinking that pregnant cows are treated well. They are kept in cages and they are barely able to move. Then, once they give birth, that calf is immediately ripped from them. If it's a male cow, it's sent to the veal factory. If it's a female cow, it will be subjected to the same fate as its' mother. Now you're probably thinking well it's just an animal, it doesn't know or care when it's baby is taken away.
  • "The terrible sound one hears on any dairy farm after a cow has given birth is the call of a lost calf, calling her mother, and the mother answering in desperation. If that is not suffering, I don't know the meaning of the word. . . . the removal of her calf is the single worst incident in the life of a dairy cow. . . . We saw one cow outside the stockade, roaming, looking for her calf, and bellowing. 'That's not a happy cow,' Temple said. 'That's one sad, unhappy, upset cow. She wants her baby. Bellowing for it, hunting for it. She'll forget for a while, and then start again. It's like grieving, mourning--not much written about it. People don't like to allow them thoughts or feelings.'"*
If that sounds unpleasant, keep in mind that the same scenario is repeated over and over again, with calf after calf, until the dairy cow is finally too old, at which point they are slaughtered. And of course since they are now older cows, the only thing their meat is good for is hamburger meat, which is a whole separate topic. Now I am certainly not going to tell you not to eat animal products, because that's a very personal decision, but I would like to ask that you think about where the food that you eat comes from, and perhaps educate yourself on the topic. If, after finding out all the facts, you still want to eat meat, drink milk, etc., that's fine, at least you know what went into what you eat. So please, do some investigating. Find out where your food comes from. Find out what it takes to get it to your plate and then make an enlightened decision about what you will choose to feed you and your family.

*Taken from "The Face on Your Plate: the Truth About Food" by Jeffrey Moussaieff Masson, pg. 80.

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